DTN's Quick Takes

Periodic Updates on the Grains, Livestock Futures Markets

Illustration by Nick Scalise

Grains

Posted 09:42 -- March corn is up 2 3/4 cents, March soybeans are up 1 3/4 cents, and May Chicago wheat is up 5 cents. Corn and wheat have pushed a little higher since 8:30, continuing to benefit from active demand in these winter months. The U.S. dollar index is up 0.04 while other commodities are mixed. April crude oil is down 68 cents.

Posted 08:50 -- After the 8:30 open, March corn is up 1 cent, March soybeans are up 2 cents, and March Chicago wheat is up 1 3/4 cents. Grains are off to a quiet start again, staying a little higher early. This week's forecast for Brazil is mostly dry, favorable for further harvest progress. At 8 a.m. CST, USDA announced a cancellation of 5.4 million bushels (136,000 mt) of optional origin corn previously sold to South Korea for 2016-17.

Livestock

OMAHA (DTN) -- Wide-ranging price swings continue to be seen through the livestock complex Wednesday morning. Front-month live cattle futures are holding a $2.50-per-cwt gain at midday, pushing prices to $121.60 per cwt. The price surge in cash cattle trade through late morning as well as supporting beef values in the boxed beef report are helping to spark additional commercial buying support in the live cattle market. Lean hog futures are holding triple-digit losses in all contracts through April 2018 at this point with front-month futures posting losses exceeding $2 per cwt. This overall lack of support in the market continues to drive additional uncertainty and volatility in all markets.

Posted 10:42 -- Aggressive gains quickly redeveloped in live cattle futures with front month February futures holding a $2.25 per cwt rally midmorning. Buyer support spilled over to other nearby contracts with April futures also holding a triple-digit gain of $1.45 per cwt. Overall strength in the complex continues to be driven by renewed commercial support and expectations tight supplies will help to draw additional buyer interest into the cash market through the rest of the week. Feeder cattle remain lightly traded at this point, but support in live cattle markets has pushed contracts 40 to 80 cents higher, replacing early losses. Lean hog futures remain under firm pressure with triple-digit losses in all nearby contracts, although pressure has stabilized with prices hovering in the same trading range as seen within the first hour of trade Wednesday morning.

Posted 09:40 -- Triple-digit losses are seen in most lean hog futures with front-month April contracts leading the market lower with a $1.50 per cwt loss during the first hour of trade. Spot contracts have quickly fallen below the $70 per cwt price level, currently trading at $68.85 per cwt as additional liquidation develops on concerns of eroding cash market support. Cattle futures are mixed during early trade. Feeder cattle futures are 20 to 40 cents lower as traders consider the pressure in the lean hog complex. Nearby live cattle futures are seeing moderate support based on overall tight supplies and expectations that cash market support may help to bring additional attention to the market.

(KA)